Third- hand smoke affects kids more
Washington, Feb. 10: Exposure to residual tobacco and nicotine lingering in carpets and upholstery in rooms, as well as a smoker’s fingers, can cause respiratory problem in children, a study has found.
The harmful effects of exposure to tobacco smoke have been known for many years. Cigarette and cigar smokers are at significantly higher risk of contracting all sorts of respiratory maladies, and research linking secondhand smoke to cancer goes back nearly three decades.
Researchers at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Centre and the University of Cincinnati in the US have found more evidence of the potentially harmful effects of exposure to the residue and particles left behind by tobacco smoke.
According to a study published in the journal Tobacco Use Insights, not smoking around children does not prevent exposure to nicotine.
They also found that that higher levels of exposure to tobacco smoke residue — which likely includes carcinogenic tobacco- specific nitrosamines — may be linked to respiratory problems.
“It just goes to show that indoor smoking bans don’t necessarily protect children from tobacco smoke exposure and related pollutants, such as thirdhand smoke,” said Ashley Merianos, from University of Cincinnati in the US.
“It also shows that exposure to tobacco smoke toxicants is more widespread than previously thought because exposure in children is not limited to inhaling secondhand smoke,” said Melinda Mahabee- Gittens, an attending physician at Cincinnati Children’s.
Research staff collected wipes of the dominant hands of 104 children between April 2016 and August 2017 with complaints potentially linked to tobacco smoke exposure and who had at least one caregiver who smoked.
The handwipes were then analysed for nicotine.